Change of plans

2008 December 16

I was planning on writing something brilliant in this space. Last night while I was lying there unable to sleep due to a combination of hot-flash slash puppy-body-heat slash invisible-raging-inferno I wrote the BEST POST EVER! It was something really cool about “Universe Justice” or Karma or whatever you call it. I’m sure it made several really insightful points that would make you stop and say, “wow, you rock.” I remember one of the points included in the post involved remembering that picture of Ronald Reagan sitting at those Iran-Contra hearings and lying through his teeth by saying “I do not recall” to every single question… then getting Alzheimer’s. Now that’s some Universe Justice for ya right there.

So anyway… it was a brilliant post but it’s gone forever. Since then all I’ve got to work with is a couple of hours of watching stupid tv. So we’ll just have to suck it up and go with that. Hmmm…

Have you ever watched that show “Wife Swap” where two families trade moms? If you haven’t they usually take two families that are polar opposites and swap the moms for two weeks. The first week the new mom has to live by the rules of her new family and the second week she gets to make up the rules for the family. I think the thing that always gets me is where the hell do they get those families? I mean they will find these crazy 1900s families where the wife has to ask her husband’s permission to go to sleep or to leave the table after supper. Seriously?! WTF? Honestly, I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen some of them.

Occasionally I like to imagine what would happen if I were swapped into one of those families:

CrazyNewHusband: Well, Hedon, while you live in our house, I’d like you to dress appropriately so you need to get some floor-length skirts immediately. And when you get changed into something proper you can start cooking up my supper and then run my bath.

Hedon — to camera guy: Uh yeah… y’all can shove your $100,000 cause I’m out of here. Mr Man can cook his own damned fish sticks. Maybe I’ll go on ‘The Biggest Loser’ instead.

We watched that Biggest Loser Finale tonight. I don’t know what it is about watching that show that instantly makes me hungry. Don’t get me wrong, I think a lot of the show and I really respect how those people work to change their lives. There’s just something about all that working out that makes me want ice cream.

I’ve even thought seriously about trying to get on the show. I mean I’m really massively over weight. And I have been thinking lately that I would like to lose weight. And I can be kinda funny or entertaining sometimes so I might provide some good television moments — even if only through sheer doofusness. But I’m seriously competitive so that would be a bonus. On the downside, if I got Jillian as my trainer I would probably either try to kill her or have an aneurysm from trying to control my temper. So that wouldn’t be good when you think about it. Maybe I should rethink that whole plan.

While I’m reconsidering the whole being on ‘The Biggest Loser’ plan, I’m going to share something with you since I’m feeling inspired by the show. It’s my very best cookie recipe that more than once has caused people to insist that I’m lying when I say I made them. I was once asked what gourmet store I had bought them at and when I said I made them the old guy said, “You’re a damned liar. Now where did you get them so I can buy some, too?”

Crackle Top Peanut Butter Cookies

  • 1 1/2 c butter softened
  • 1 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 c packed brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 c creamy peanut butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 t real vanilla
  • 3 1/2 c all purpose flour – unsifted
  • 1 t baking soda
  • 1 t salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar (for rolling only — usually I end up having to add more)

Cream butter, granulated sugar and brown sugar. Then blend in the peanut butter. Then the eggs. And finally blend in the vanilla. In another bowl mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt. I’m sure it’s not a huge surprise to find that you then blend the flour mixture into the other mixture. (Wow! Really Hedon? You’re just FULL of surprises! Blend the dry mixture into the creamed mixture? For cookies? Wow… who would have thought?)

Ok, smarty pants, here’s the secret of these cookies. Spread the other granulated sugar on a paper plate. Measure out about a rounded tablespoon of dough and roll into a ball between your palms. Usually when I’m making other kinds of cookies I tend to make big ones cause I’m lazy and that gets you done faster. You don’t want to make these bigger than a tablespoon or so. Trust me. Anyway, when you get your rounded tablespoon of dough rolled into a good ball, the surface kinda glistens with that certain something-something. Now roll the ball around in the sugar until it’s well coated. Place the sugar-coated balls about two inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Be careful taking the cookie sheet to the oven — for some reason those little balls are really slick and four or five of them will just fly right off on the floor if you turn around too fast with the tray in your hands. Seriously. I’m just saying. Once you make it safely to the oven, bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 9 to 11 minutes. Cool on wire racks.

I don’t really know why it works, but while in the oven these cookies flatten down and develop the most awesome looking cracks across the top of the cookies. They are a big old pain in the butt to make what with having to make 8,045 little cookies from one batch, but they taste awesome and they really do look excellent as well. Hope you like them.

3 Responses
  1. 2008 December 17

    Hi Hedon!

    This recipe sounds delicious! It’s also somewhat similar to a cookie I make at Christmastime called Peanut Butter Blossoms. If you haven’t tried it before, as soon as you take them out of the oven, press a hershey’s kiss or miniature reese’s peanut butter cup in the middle then let cool. They are delicious! Only problem I have is sometimes they have to be left out for an hour or two to cool so that the chocolate hardens back up again.

    I have to try yours now, I’m so excited! Although I get pretty excited about cookies, sad I know!

    Another question – is there a huge flavor difference between artificial vanilla and real vanilla? I only ask because I have never used real vanilla before (primarily only because of the price) and I was super tempted to buy it last night but the frugal in me wouldn’t allow it. Is it worth the while?

  2. 2008 December 17

    Hi Jennifer!

    I will try adding some chocolate to them. I do like peanut butter and chocolate together and have considered adding a few chocolate chips.

    I don’t blame you on the getting excited about cookies — I love cookies. Oh, and pie — my god I do love pie. Most pies. Especially gooseberry pie.

    As for vanilla, I spent my entire life using artificial vanilla. It’s just what I was raised with and what I continued using once I was out on my own. I’m sure Mom got artificial for the price as well.

    Well one day I accidently got the real stuff and — after I got over the sticker-shock at the register — I used it in some chocolate chip cookies that night. They were really really good. Since then I usually buy the real stuff. But if I do get the artificial I now tend to use a little more than the recipe calls for. Can’t tell you how much extra though. Just a little.

    Some time when you’re feeling wild get a small bottle of the real stuff and let me know what you think — I could just be crazy, you know.

  3. 2008 December 17

    I will have to do that! I’ll let you know how it turns out! :)

    PS..PIE = GOOD! My Aunt Stella made the best peach pie at Christmas. Boy do I miss that!

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